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Are you wondering what to buy a new mom for herself? The best gifts for a new mom are not for the baby and are things she wouldn’t think to ask for. As a relatively new mom who remembers the postpartum period far too vividly, I’ve compiled this ultimate list of the best gifts for a new mom. Whether you’re looking for a shower gift, a present to drop by after baby is born, or just a way to help, you’ll find all the answers you need here. Are you a partner looking to buy a gift for your wife after giving birth? Check out our list of push presents!
Types of Gifts for a New Mom
There are so many different types of gifts for a new mom, so we’ll break them down into categories so you can easily find what fits your time frame and budget.
- Self Care Gifts – items that will help a stressed and exhausted new mom feel a little more loved and pampered. Learn more here about self care for new moms!
- Postpartum Support – gifts to help mom’s physical recovery
- Baby Care Support – presents to make her life with a new baby easier
- Time Saving Gifts – products and services that will save the busy new mom time and energy
- Gifts that Cost You Time, Not Money – ways to support a new mom without having to shell out dollars you don’t have
Through these 5 types of gift suggestions, we’ll provide ideas for all types of situations, such as the following:
- What is the best gift for a new mom?
- What do you bring to a new mom?
- How can I help my new mom from far away?
- What do you get a new mom who has everything? (I promise, she still needs the items in section 5, “Gifts that Cost You Time, Not Money)
- What can I get a new mom that’s cheap?
What to Buy a New Mom For Herself
Check out the list below of gifts for new moms that are for her, not for baby!
1. Self-Care Gifts
So often, while the new baby receives so many gifts and so much attention that the mom can’t use all her child has received, the new mom ends up feeling isolated and lonely. (Click here to read “The Excruciating Loneliness of Being a New Mother.”)
The following gifts are suggestions of what to buy a new mom for herself that will help her feel just a bit more loved and pampered. Ideally, they’ll also help her rest (ha!) and maintain some sanity.
More than anything, they’ll remind her of your thoughtful support, which helps tremendously during the lonely times.
(1) Comfy slippers: She’s going to spend a lot of time at home, and it’s nice to be able to walk around comfortably. If they’re fuzzy with memory foam, even better!
(2) Comfy pajamas: I rarely got dressed during the early postpartum days, so comfy pajamas were HUGE! Talk about a great gift when you’re trying to figure out what to buy a new mom for herself, not for baby! I had 2 favorite brands:
Kindred Bravely is postpartum specific and many of the clothes are made for nursing, but they’re equally as comfortable and amazing for formula-feeding mamas. Makers of my favorite sleeping bras AND postpartum pajamas! They also have pumping bras for pumping moms.
Barefoot Dreams are truly the SOFTEST, most AMAZING pajamas I’ve ever worn. But they’re also PRICEY! So I include them, but know it’s a splurge gift that mama will LOVE you for! I wore the robe, nightgowns, and other pajamas I was gifted until they had too many holes to even justify using them around the house.
Find even more suggestions in our full list of the very BEST postpartum pajamas.
(3) Homedics Spa Products: Homedics is known for their amazing spa products–from massagers to foot baths to oil diffusers and more. My favorite of their gifts for a new mom is their Sound Spa and Slumber Scent. This noise machine has an adjustable soft light and works as an ultrasonic oil diffuser. It’s the perfect dim-light, relaxing companion to waking up with a crying baby in the night. If mom is nursing, the clock is also a great feature, as it’s hard to time nursing sessions in the dark!
2. Postpartum Support
We’ve talked a lot about the difficulty of the postpartum period, both in terms of physical and emotional recovery. To gain a better understanding of what the new mom is going through, click here to learn about postpartum recovery.
The following gifts for a new mom will help mom with her physical recovery:
(1) Belly Bandit shirts, bras, and support wraps: Belly Bandit is best known for its support wraps, providing lower-back support, helping traumatized stomach muscles, and offering specific C-section support wraps. I also love their super comfy nursing shirts and bras, which work for both breastfeeding and formula-feeding moms.
(2) Nursing Clothing: If the new mom is nursing, she’ll likely need nursing tops. There are tons of options out there for your favorite new mom!
You can find more nursing wear in our list of the very best postpartum pajamas.
(3) Postpartum Gift Bag: I don’t love any of the postpartum gift bags that are on the market, so I always make my own! My gift bag is full of items first-time-moms don’t know they need for postpartum recovery. This gift for new mom is totally for herself, although she may not know it until baby comes!
To learn how to create a rocking postpartum gift bag, check out our postpartum must haves
3. Baby Care Support
While this list is specifically about what to buy a new mom for herself, not gifts for baby, there are certain gifts for a new mom that will make her life with baby easier. While we certainly want to feel like we’re treating mama, not baby, anything that makes her life easier does support her.
So, we’ve pulled some of the top baby-care products that we’ve seen make life easier. These are great gifts, especially for showers, when you want to treat mom but know gifts are expected to be for babies.
I love 2 things about it: (1) Every sitter is recommended by neighbors! (2) There’s an option to filter for people who are for infants, which is HARD to find. This feature is what puts Bambino above other sitting apps, in my book.
This is a great gift to buy for new mom. Tell her to use code “KATY2019” for $10 their first use of a sitter, including the value of the gift card you gave!
(2) Snoo: If you’ve heard of the Snoo, you’re thinking I’m insane. Who can afford that? But did you know that Snoo, marketed as your own electronic night nurse, can be RENTED now?
This amazing gadget keeps baby safely swaddled on his/her back, and it works to lull baby back to sleep.
By connecting to an app on parents’ phones, it tells them what stage of sleep baby is in and alerts them when it can’t get baby back to sleep and they need to wake up to care for baby.
(3) Binxy Baby: I love the recommendations in the next section, Time Saving Gifts, such as gifts that prevent mom from having to take baby to the grocery store. BUT, sometimes she’ll have to, and when she does, this product is truly a lifesaver!
(4) Kiinde Milk Gift Set: Ideal for pumping moms, but also great for formula-feeding moms, this “breast milk storage set” provides storage bags and a bottle warmer that totally takes away the need to wash bottles. Hallelujah! Give mom her time (and soft hands) back with this amazing gift.
4. Time Saving Gifts
When you have a new little one, it feels like there’s never enough time for anything! The to-do list is constantly getting longer, and it’s likely only in mom’s head because she never has free hands to write anything down. Maybe, if she’s really organized, it’s in a note on her phone.
I remember how frustrated I got when people told me, “Just sleep when the baby sleeps.”
First, I had postpartum anxiety, so I couldn’t sleep at all. Read more about how to deal with postpartum anxiety
Second, I just wanted to scream at them. “If I sleep when the baby sleeps, when the hell do you expect me to eat, pump, wash all his bottle and pump parts (God bless you, pumping moms), empty diaper pails, do the piles of spit-up-filled laundry?” And that’s just a tiny part of the list.
What I needed more than anything was time. And that’s true of most new moms. These suggested gifts for a new mom will help her save time and, thus, frustration. Heck, maybe she’ll even get to sleep when the baby sleeps. Not likely, but maybe.
(1) Amazon Prime Membership: (Check to see if they already have one first!) This membership will get free 2-day shipping (or less) from Amazon, which makes it much easier to keep up with supplies they need around the house!
(2) Audible Membership: New moms spend lots of time watching TV and listening to podcasts or audiobooks while their little ones sleep in their arms. Books are hard to read with a babe in arms, but easy to listen to!
(3) Amazon Fresh Membership: Free grocery delivery? Yes, please! Infant seats and grocery carts are no one’s friend!
(4) Instacart Gift Card: Or gift an Express Membership to offer free delivery. See which is better for grocery delivery in the new mom’s area. Sometimes it’s Amazon Fresh; other times it’s Instacart. I’m actually a huge Instacart fan!t
(5) InstaPot + Cookbook: Don’t go off brand on the InstaPot. Trust me. Meals get made SO quickly and easily with an InstaPot, but if the mom doesn’t already have one, she won’t know what to do with it. This is why the cookbook is essential.
(6) Amazon Gift Card: The gift that works for everyone because they can buy anything they need and have it arrive right at their door! Need more wipes? Boom, mailed to your door. Decide to use a different bottle and don’t want to drag baby around town trying to find it? Order it from your couch!
5. Gifts that Cost You Time, Not Money
The price points on the gifts above vary, but sometimes, it’s just not in your budget to buy gifts for a new mom. And that’s okay!
Some of the best things you can do for a new mom are totally free. You heard me. FREE!
Here’s a list of the best things you can do for a new mom that cost little to nothing.
(1) Show up and do something. When you go to visit (which you should, because remember, she’s likely lonely), don’t just hold the baby for half an hour and leave. DO SOMETHING!
If at all possible, show up with a meal. Visit at lunch time and offer to bring her lunch.
And while you’re there do something that you can imagine is on her to-do list. Don’t ask what you should do because her list is too long toeven know what to tell you. Just do it. Empty a diaper pail, take out the trash, do the dishes, do a load of laundry.
(2) Give her a few minutes to herself. Give her advanced notice that you’re coming, ALWAYS, and hold the baby while she does something.
If you don’t tell her to do something, she won’t do it. Giving her options will help even more.
My friend Mary used to come over and say, “I’m here for an hour and a half. What do you need to do? I suggest pump, eat, shower, dry your hair, and put on lotion. But you can nap if you’d prefer.” I felt like I’d been given a spa day just by getting to eat and shower. Drying my hair and putting on lotion just seemed beyond insane. Thursdays with Mary were the greatest!
(3) Run one of her errands. Here’s the thing: she will not ask for this, and she likely won’t even know what errand she needs you to run. Figure it out anyway.
When my friend Emily asked what errands she could run for me, I had no idea what to say. So she rephrased her question and asked where I was planning to ask Husband to go that day. AH HA! Now that was easy. Target and Whole Foods. So that’s where she went.
(4) Cook her a meal. You can prepare it ahead of time, or show up and cook it at her house to give her company. If you cook at her house, just make sure you clean up EVERY SINGLE BIT OF YOUR MESS!
Emily made me my favorite muffins, and it was Heaven, because I could eat those one-handed even when no one was around and I was overwhelmed.
*Note: They’re probably already getting a lot of lasagna. Everyone makes lasagna because it freezes well. I was immensely grateful for each lasagna I received, and I ate every bite, but when my friend Julia showed up with a fresh salad and a poppyseed chicken casserole, I was near tears because I was so excited for something different.
(5) Bring her something reheatable (or that she can eat cold) for breakfast. Mornings with a new baby are SO hard. Mom is exhausted from a long night, hasn’t likely had caffeine yet, and has a baby who needs EVERYTHING.
Muffins were my go-to–filled with oats and healthy ingredients to give me a smidge of nutrition, but still not something I could call healthy. But when someone showed up with individual (made in muffin-tins) quiches, it was amazing. It was like a REAL breakfast. I could heat it up and have eggs and bacon and sausage. What was even happening?
(6) Text to check in. I’m serious. This is a gift, and it’s something you can do from far away. I just needed human contact, and having people check in was lifesaving. I appreciated calls, but I couldn’t usually make them work–I wasn’t that adept at using my 2 hands for multiple things. So texts were my lifeline.
Interested in Other Ideas for Gifts for New Moms?
Check out the following posts for more ideas for gifts for new moms!
- “New Mom Care Package: Essential Ideas for New Mom Survival Kits”
- Best postpartum pajamas
- Best books for babies
What Do You Buy a New Mom for Herself?
Let’s expand our list in the comments!
Other Gift Guides
- Gifts that give back
- Miscarriage gifts
- Rainbow baby gifts
- Infertility gifts
- IVF gifts
- Best gifts for 2 year olds
- Push presents
Katy Huie Harrison, PhD, is an author, mom, recurrent miscarriage survivor, & owner of Undefining Motherhood. She lives in Atlanta with her husband (affectionately known on the internet as “Husband,”) son (Jack), and dog (Charlotte). She believes our society puts too many expectations on women that make womanhood and motherhood restrictive. Her goal is to shift the paradigm about what it means to be a woman and mother, giving all women a greater sense of agency over their own lives. You can find Katy and her work featured in places like CNN’s Headline News, Romper, Scary Mommy, Demeter Press’s Motherhood and Social Exclusion, & more.